New Delhi, Dec 25: A whopping 1,671 projects involving foreign investments have been cleared by the Union Government in the year 2015 and this is thanks to the formulation of the new National Security Clearance 9NSC) Policy.
The new policy was put in place by the Union Home Ministry at the insistence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi who has assured the foreign investor about ease of doing business in India.
Foreign investors have often complained about the delay in projects being cleared. As per the earlier policy, the time frame to give security clearance to a project was 16 weeks.
However, with the new policy in place, it is mandatory that security clearance is given in 4 to 6 weeks.
Ease of doing business:
If one looks at the statistics it clearly indicates that having a new policy in place has made the process faster. In the year 2013, 712 projects were cleared while in 2014 it was 815.
The new policy was formulated in the month of June 2015 and this year alone has seen 1,671 projects being cleared.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nripendra Mishra, Principal Secretary in the PMO made instructed the home ministry of India to formulate a policy that would reduce the time frame to give security clearance.
After the formulation of the policy the time frame was reduced from 16 weeks to 4 weeks to give security clearance. Out of the 1,671 projects cleared, 18 were from the United States of America, 8 from China, 11 from Hong Kong, six from Germany and four from the United Kingdom.
There are two projects from Bangladesh too which have been cleared.
What is a security clearance?
A security clearance for a project involves seeking reports from the intelligence bureau both at the state and centre.
An opinion from the state police is also sought before such clearance is granted. These agencies along would analyse a host of issues such as threat perception, national unity, territorial integrity and security protection.
After a series of high level meetings personally monitored by the Prime Minister, the Home Ministry in June formulated the new national security clearance policy. While a host of changes were made, the most important one was speeding up the process.